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South Italian vases

(1,233 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] I. Beginnings The first workshops in southern Italy for red-figured pottery appeared around the mid 5th cent. BC, founded by Athenian vase-painters. Native artists were trained there. Thus, the initial dependence on Attic models, which expressed itself e.g. in the choice of motif or Atticizing forms (Lucanian vases), was replaced by a characteristic painting style and repertoire of decorations and motifs. Towards the end of the 5th cent. BC, the so-called 'ornate and plain styles' emerged in Apulian vase-painting (Apulian vases). Through th…

Mourning

(981 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] I. Literary sources In Greece and Rome, deaths and accidents, financial and business losses and military defeats were occasions for mourning (πένθος/ pénthos; Lat. luctus). Aside from the characteristic mourning dress, women displayed their mourning by renouncing gold jewellery (Dion. Hal. Ant. 5,48,4; Liv. 34,7,10), by beating, and sometimes baring, their chests (Prop. 2,13,27; Petron. 111,2), by loosening and tearing their hair (Catull. 64,348-351; Tib. 1,1,67 f.; Liv. 1,26,2), by crying and wailing (P…

Klismos

(111 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κλισμός; klismós, Latin cathedra). The klismos is a high chair without armrests and with a broad, curved backrest, attested as early as in Homer (e.g. Il. 8,436; Od. 4,136) as a seat for nobility, gods, and heroes. Greek and Roman art confirms this, but the klismos is often seen in representations of domestic rooms, schools, and other everyday scenes as well. At times, the seated persons laid an arm on the backrest for comfort and relaxation, and often the relaxed way of sitting is supported by footrests and cushions. Diphros; Furniture Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliogr…

Stola

(181 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The stola was the garment worn in public by Roman matrons ( Matrona [1]), i.e. free-born women (Plin. HN 33,40), over a fairly close-fitting tunica or a looser calasis and under a palla, so that their bodies were entirely  enveloped (cf. Hor. Sat. 1,2,99). It reached to the ankles and was capacious, pleated and cinctured at bust or waist level (Mart. 3,93,4). The stola consisted of a tube of material which the wearer slipped into; it was held on the shoulders by means of twisted ribbons or strings. It had trimming ( instita) on the lower selvage, presumably a purple rib…

Culter

(133 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (Greek μάχαιρα, máchaira). Originally the  knife, specifically the knife of butchers and therefore the butchering tool in  sacrifices (Hom. Hym. Apoll. 535f. for máchaira). On Greek and Roman representations, the hiereús or the victimarius has the sacrificial knife brought to him on a tray or holds it in his hand. The culter was used to open the carotid artery of the sacrificial animal and to cut out its intestines. The sacrificing victimarius was also called cultrarius after the sacrificial knife. Furthermore, the culter was the attribute of oriental peoples w…

Latrunculorum ludus

(249 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The game in which it was a matter of defeating all the stones of the opponent by clever placement of one's own, takes its name from Latin latro (‘mercenary’, later also ‘bandit’); the winner was given the title Imperator (cf. SHA Proculus 13,2). The course of the game has not been fully clarified, but from the literary sources (Varro, Ling. 10,22; Ov. Ars am. 3,357f., cf. 2,207; Sen. De tranquillitate animi 14,7; Laus Pisonis 190-208) we have an approximate picture: the latrunculorum ludus was played by two partners on a chess-board-like playing board that norm…

Kredemnon

(191 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κρήδεμνον; krḗdemnon, Latin calautica, also κάλυμνα/ kálymna, καλύπτρη/ kalýptrē). In general the top covering, also of a wine or storage vessel (Hom. Od. 3,392) or of a circular wall (Hom. Il. 16,100), but subsequently mostly a woman's headscarf which covered the shoulders and could be used to conceal the face (Hom. Il. 14,184; 16,470; Hom. Od. 1,334). In the 5th cent. BC the word continued to be used only in poetry (e.g. Eur. Phoen. 1490); the usual expressions for veils and especially for bridal veils were kálymna and kalýptrē (cf. Aesch. Ag. 1178). The krḗdemnon was a…

Lamp

(725 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] As containers for flammable oil and wick holders, lamps made of clay are a ubiquitous find from antiquity; less numerous are lamps made of bronze, marble and plaster. The basic shape of the lamp was the stone bowl, which was already used as a lamp early in the Stone Age. Early lamps of clay follow this basic form; they are shaped on a potter's wheel and creased one or several times to accommodate the wick in the spout that is thereby created. These Phoenician lamps (also called ‘P…

Bathing costume

(98 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ᾤα λουτρίς; ṓia loutrís, subligar). Men and women wore loin cloths or bath towels made from sheepskins or cloth during the communal bath in bath houses (Poll. 7,66; 10,181,   perizoma ,   subligaculum ), women also wore a breast band (vase paintings, ‘bikini girl’ of  Piazza Armerina). Men's bathing costumes could also be made from leather ( aluta, Mart. 7,35,1). In Pap. Cair. Zen. 60,8, there is mention of an ἐκλουστρίς ( ekloustrís). It is uncertain if bonnets ( vesica) were worn. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography R. Ginouvès, Balaneutikè, 1962, 223-225 W. Hein…

Karchesion

(89 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] [1] see Schiffahrt see Navigation Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) [German version] [2] Drinking vessel A quite large drinking vessel, similar in shape to the kantharos (Ath. 11,474e-475b; Macrob. Sat. 5,21,1-6) for wine (Mart. 8,56,14; Ov. Met. 12,317), which according to Ath. 11,500f. was one of the vessels of a Greek symposium. In Rome, it was also a sacrificial vessel (e.g. Ov. Met. 7,246). Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography W. Hilgers, Lat. Gefäßnamen, BJ, 31. Beih., 1969, 48; 140f. S. Rottroff, Hellenistic Pottery, The Athenian Agora 29, 1997, 88f.

Teano ware

(196 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Genre of vases from the last quarter of the 4th cent. and the first half of the 3rd cent. BC, named after their main find spot in northern Campania, the ancient Teanum Sidicinum, which was probably also the centre of production. Shallow bowls on small circular stands, known as footed dishes, with tall stems, skyphoi, gutti, oinochoai, kernoi and vessels in the shape of birds (see ill.) are common; other vessel types, such as kalyx kraters, are distinctly rare. The decoration of th…

Footstool

(241 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (θρῆνυς/ thrḗnys, ὑποπόδιον/ hypopódion, σφέλας/ sphélas, rarely χελώνη/ chelṓnē; Latin scabellum, scamnum). The footstool was used as a foot bench for a person sitting on the  klismos,  throne or a similar high seating (cf. Hom. Od. 17,409 f.), or as a step for climbing up on the  Kline or down from it. There were three footstool variants: rectangular footstools with simple vertical legs, rectangular footstools with curved legs that ended in animal feet (lion feet), sphinxes etc., as well a…

Mastic

(264 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (μαστίχη; mastíchē, Lat. mastiche, mastix). Aromatic resin of the mastic tree ( schínos; pistacia lentiscus L.) and the oil from its berries. The name is presumably derived from masásthai, ‘to chew’, since the resin was popular for chewing, because of its pleasant taste and hardness, for dental care and against bad breath, just as small pieces of mastic wood were used as toothpicks. The small, evergreen mastic tree (and bush) was planted and cultivated all over the Mediterranean, although its resin was not o…

Messapian pottery

(239 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Messapian pottery originated on the Italian peninsula of Salento (in Antiquity Messapia or Iapygia) around the mid-7th cent. BC as an independent genre. For the most part, geometric patterns (circles, squares, diamonds, horizontal lines, swastikas, etc.) were sparsely distributed over vessels; later, under Greek influence maeanders were added. Preferred vessel forms were the olla , pitcher and trozzella ( nestoris). Early in the 5th cent. BC, figurative representations, which also included new ornaments (ivy and other leaf motifs), appe…

Mantica

(79 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] A Roman sack made of leather for transporting goods of all kinds including food (Apul. Met. 1,18). The mantica was carried on the shoulder so that it lay over the back and chest (Pers. 4,24; Hor. Sat. 1,6,106), or when travelling on horseback over its hindquarters. A manticula, a small leather sack, was carried by poorer people. manticulari also means ‘steal’ or ‘cheat’, and the thief (‘cutpurse’) was called a manticulator ( -arius). Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)

Plate

(96 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (πίναξ/ pínax, λεκάνη/ lekánē; Lat. catillus). Plates were used, like flatter platters and deeper bowls, for preparing and serving food at table (e.g. Hom. Od. 1,141; 16,49 f.); they could be round or square, with or without a stand, with curved or steep walls. In archaeological finds plates are attested from the 8th cent. BC until the end of Antiquity in various materials (bronze, wood, silver, clay, tin etc.). Catinus [1]; Crockery; Fish-plate; Lanx; Table culture Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography S. Künzl, Das Tafelgeschirr, in: E. Künzl (ed.), Die Ala…

Knives

(421 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The essential part of the knife is the blade, the form and development of which is determined by its particular function and use such as cutting off or cutting up. Furthermore, in the shape of a dagger it is used for piercing. The knife is one of the oldest and most essential aids in the history of humanity; it has been used for housework ( Household equipment), for hunting, as a tool in many areas (e.g. for working with wood or leather: σμίλη/ smílē, σμίλιον/ smílion, τομεύς/ tomeús, Latin scalprum, culter, crepidarius), in agriculture (tree knives, picks, sickles for …

Scissors

(168 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ψαλίς/ psalís; Latin forfex, forpex, forficula). Scissors, made of iron or bronze, were used in sheep and goat shearing, for cutting cloth and metal, hair and beards, in cobbling and in agriculture, for chopping plants and fruits and separating grapes from the vine. Scissors seem to have come into use from the early 5th cent. BC in Greece, and in Italy (according to written sources) from around 300 BC (Varro, Rust. 2,11,9), though the plucking of fleeces was still common in sheep-shea…

Sandals

(579 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (πέδιλον/ pédilon, σανδάλον, -ιον/ sandálon, -ion; Lat. sandalion, solea, all usually plur). Sandals (soles attached with straps to the feet and reaching up to the ankles or just above) were certainly the most common ancient footwear and were made in various variations. Greek sandals were tied with thin laces up to the ankles [2. 270, fig. 5]; only in the Roman Imperial Period did there emerge ribbon-like leather straps, crossing or running diagonally over the foot. The straps were often …

Purpurissum

(81 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Costly paint and make-up (Plin. HN 35,44) manufactured from the mixture of heated purple sap and silver clay (or silver chalk, creta argentaria); purpurissum became brighter the more silver clay was added. As a painter's pigment, purpurissum was highly esteemed for its vivid colour (Plin. HN 35,30; 35,44 f.; 35,49). Women used purpurissum together with white lead ( cerussa) to colour their cheeks and lips (cf. Plaut. Mostell. 258, 261; Plaut. Truc. 290). Cosmetics; Pigments Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)

Cista

(206 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κίστη, kístē). A round basket woven out of willow branches or tree bark, with a lid that often has the same height as the lower part and can be placed over it; also with a flapping lid or a disc-shaped lid. The cista is illustrated on numerous monuments, e.g., Attic and Lower Italian vases, funerary reliefs and Locrian clay tablets. Figurines have also been found. In marriage scenes they function as a gift to the woman. They apparently represent the female sphere since numerous household objects are visible when opened. …

Stylus

(296 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
(γραφίς/ graphís, γραφεῖον/ grapheîon; Latin stilus, graphium). [German version] [1] Tool for drawing Tool for drawing, also called a drawing- (or ruling)-pen, see Construction technique, Building trade. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) [German version] [2] Writing implement Implement for writing on a wooden tablet covered with wax (Cera). The pointed (lower) end of a stylus was used to engrave the text to be written on the tablet and, by inverting it, the flat (upper) end could be used to correct mistakes by re-smoothing the wax ( stilum vertere, e.g. Hor. Sat. 1,10,72). Representati…

Iliupersis Painter

(213 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Apulian vase painter of the second quarter of the 4th cent. BC, named after a volute crater in London (BM Inv. F 160 [1. 193 no. 8]) with the image of the  Iliupersis. The Iliupersis Painter (IP) belongs to those creatively engaged vase painters who produced pioneering innovations for the development of later  Apulian vase painting; among these are the introduction of burial scenes ( Naiscus vases), additionally the fluting of vessels on their lower sections and the decoration of …

Quadriga

(519 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (τετραορία/ tetraoría, τέθριππον/ téthrippon; Lat. usually plur. quadrigae). Carriage-and-four, a two-wheeled carriage drawn by four horses side by side, steered from a standing position; invented, by ancient tradition, by Trochilus or Erichthonius [1] (Verg. G. 3,113, cf. Plin. HN 7,202). The carriage-and-four is very seldom mentioned in the Homeric epics (e.g. Hom. Il. 8,185; 11,699). Occuring more often later in the literary tradition, e.g., in mythical contests (Oenomaus and Pelops, …

Kemai

(153 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Campanian type of vase in the late 4th and early 3rd cents. BC, named after the inscription on a vase in London (BM, Inv. F 507, [1. 674 no. 4]). The prevailing shape of the vessel resembles a stamnus ( Vessels, fig. C 6) but it has vertical handles, sharply drawn-in shoulders and a lip that juts out widely; in many cases the lid has also been preserved, so that archaeological research also refers to the vessel as a pyxis. The painting is ornamental and consists of small palmette…

Probolion

(118 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (προβόλιον/ probólion). Short spear (Hdt. 7,76), or rather hunting spear (Hesych. s. v. προβόλιον), especially for hunting boar (Xen. Cyn. 10; Philostr. Imag. 1,28,5) or lions; hardly ever used as a term in modern archaeological research, even if there have been attempts to identify probólia in Minoan-Mycenaean and Geometric hunting scenes (on the attribute of the komos described in Philostr. Imag. 1,2,2 as a probólion see [1]). Furthermore, probólion was also the term for a fortified place, a fortress (Xen. Mem. 3,5,7; Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 10,16,4). Hunting Hurschm…

Naiskos vases

(278 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] With representations of a naïskos (diminutive of naós, ‘temple’) on Lower Italian vases, a new form of depicting funerary monuments emerged in the 2nd quarter of the 4th cent. BC. It can probably be traced back to the Iliupersis Painter. In Apulian vase painting (Apulian vases) NV are unusually common after the middle of the 4th cent. BC, while they are exceptions in other Lower Italian artistic regions. NV are vases that are specially produced for the cult of the dead; they not only po…

Skaphe

(290 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (σκάφη, σκαφίς, σκάφιον, σκάφος/ skáphē, skaphís, skáphion; Latin scapha, scaphium). Frequently used term for a basin, tank, vat, trough (or a small boat) or a wood or metal tub, a receptacle used agriculturally (Hom. Od. 9,223; cf. Theoc. 5,59) and domestically (Aristoph. Eccl. 738-739, cf. Anth. Pal. 6,306). A woman's chamber pot could also be called a scapha. According to Hdt. 4,73,2 the Scythae threw hot stones into a skáphē to make a cleansing 'steam bath'. Romulus and Remus are supposed to have been exposed in a skáphē (Plut. Romulus 3; in Soph. Fr. 574 N a cr…

Barber

(282 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κουρεύς/ koureús; tonsor). It is unknown when the occupation of the barber and hairdresser first became an autonomous profession in Greece. In myth the barber is only rarely mentioned ( Midas); early representation of a barber: Boeotian terracotta in Berlin [1]. The barber is considered to be talkative and curious (Plut. Mor. 2,177a; 508) and knows the latest gossip. The barber's room (κουρεῖον/ koureîon) is the place where people get together (Lys. 24,3,20; Plut. Timoleon 14; Plut. Mor. 716ff.), and where you can also contract business dea…

Matta

(97 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ψίαθος/ psíathos). Mat or coarse cover made of rushes and straw, in Egypt also of papyrus (cf. Theophr. Hist. pl. 4,8,4). It served as bedding on the floor for farmers, travellers and the poor; in an Attic inscription it is also listed as part of the furnishings of a house [1]. According to Augustine (Contra Faustum 5,5) he who sleeps on a matta is the follower of a doctrine that preaches a frugal life ( mattarius). A sleeping-mat could also be called χαμεύνη/ chameúnē (Poll. 6,11). Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography 1Hesperia 5, 1936, 382 no. 6 A.

Writing tablets

(384 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The use of wooden tablets (δέλτος/ déltos, cf. Hdt. 8,135, or δελτίον/ deltíon, cf. Hdt. 7,239) coated with wax for the transmission of written messages (therefore in the form of a letter, Pl. Ep. 312d) appears to have been known to the Greeks from the end of the 8th cent. BC (Writing). In this context, the Homeric epic (Hom. Il. 6,168-170) speaks of a πίναξ πτυκτός/ pínax ptyktós (cf. Hdt. 7,239: δελτίον δίπτυχον/ deltíon díptychon). The folding wooden tablet (Diptychon) consisted of two panels connected with a hinge; their inner sides, covered with a…

Torus

(137 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Latin term (Greek τύλη/ týlē; τυλεῖον/ tyleîon) for anything raised or bulge-like, such as the convex circular parts of an Ionic column base (Column [II B 3] with ill.; the term entered mediaeval and modern architectural terminology in the form ( torus) usual in Vitr. De arch. 3,5,2-3), the calloused skin of the neck and shoulders of a load carrier (Aristoph. Ach. 860; 954: týlē) or the bulging of animals' muscles (Plin. HN 18,78: torus ). Týlē was also the word for cushions on klinai and furniture for sitting on (Sappho fr. 46 Lobel/Page; Diod. Sic. 13,84,5…

Acerra

(94 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Incense container,   pyxís (πυξίς, κυλιχνίς, λιβανωτίς; kylichnís, libanōtís). A small box, round on Greek monuments (cf. side panel of the Ludovisi throne [1. fig. 118]) and often rectangular and richly decorated on Roman ones (e.g. on the  Ara Pacis), which served to make the incense available during a sacrificial ceremony; it was regarded as part of the ceremony's essential utensils (Suet. Tib. 44; Galba 8; Plin. HN 35,70).  Turibulum Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography 1 R. Lullies, Gr. Plastik, 1979. F. Fless, Opferdiener und Kultmusiker auf stadtröm.…

Bigae

(584 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Short form from Lat. biiugae (Greek: δίζυξ; dízyx; συνωρίς; synōrís); originally two animals moving under one yoke (horse, cow, mule), especially used for teams of horses. Worthy of mention for the early Greek period are not just the representations already extant from the Minoan-Mycenaean culture on frescos, signet rings and similar objects or the models made of clay or bronze, but also especially the lively description in Homer (Il. 23,392f., funeral games for  Patroclus) of a horse race…

Billienus, C.

(118 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The Roman proconsul B. was privately honoured c. 100 BC on  Delos by a marble statue in armour, with a plinth in the form of the bow of a ship (height c. 235 cm), placed in front of the east wall of the Stoa of  Antigonus [2] Gonatas. It was found in situ during the French excavations in 1909, its arms, head and left lower leg missing. Today the name B. is associated with the very first armoured statue to which a name can be ascribed with certainty. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography J. Marcadé, Au Musée de Délos, 1969, 134, 329-333, pl. 75 K. Tuchelt, Frühe Denkmäler Roms i…

Lycurgus Painter

(174 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Apulian vase painter of the ornate style ( Apulian vases) from the middle of the 4th cent. BC, student of the Iliupersis Painter, named after the image of the ‘madness of Lycurgus’ on a calyx crater (London, BM Inv. F 271, [1. 415, no. 5, pl. 147]). The Lycurgus Painter painted mostly vessels with large surfaces (craters, hydrias, situles), which he liked to ornament with mythological themes. He further developed the use of spatial depth and perspective, distributed his mytholo…

Lacerna

(172 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] A fringed (schol. Pers. 1,54) open cloak, a special form of the sagum , probably introduced in the 1st cent. BC (first mention Cic. Phil. 2,30,76); used at first as a soldier's coat which in poetry might also be worn by mythical kings and heroes (e.g. Ov. Fast. 2,743-747; Prop. 4,3,18). The lacerna soon became an everyday garment and was popular in the 1st cent. AD. Initially made of coarse wool, light fabrics were also used which were dyed purple or scarlet (Mart. 2,29,3; 4,61,4; 4,8,10; Juv. 1,27). The lacerna was worn over the tunica, instead of the toga, or over…

Cane, club, stick

(402 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] These objects (βάκτρον/ báktron, κηρύκειον/ kerýkeion, ῥάβδος/ rhábdos, σκῆπτρον/ skêptron; Lat. baculum, caduceus, lituus [1], rudis , stimulus) could be straight, with a curvature at the top end, knotty, angled or smooth and could vary in thickness and length. They were carved from hard wood (e.g. olive or myrtle) and might be left plain or decorated with gold embellishments (Ath. 12,543 f.) or reinforced with iron (Theoc. Epigr. 17,31). They were used by old people (old men, teachers) and the …

Pallium

(234 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] A Roman cloak, corresponding to the Greek himation, of a rectangular length of material; fabrics used were wool, linen and silk. Pallia could be variously coloured (white, diverse shades of red, yellowish, black) with gold brocade or purple stripes. They are known from the 3rd cent. BC and were initially worn only by friends of Greek culture, e.g. philosophers (Liv. 29,10); but they quite soon enjoyed the greatest popularity because they were comfortable and simple to wear (cf. Suet. Aug. 40) and were…

Oscillum

(181 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Group of round or pelta-shaped (i.e. based on the shape of the shield of an Amazon) ornamental marble discs, executed in relief, and dating from the period between the 1st cent. BC and the middle of the 2nd cent. AD. Oscilla for the most part come from the Vesuvian cities and have been found in villas and townhouses with gardens, in which they were used as decoration, hanging from chains between the columns of garden peristyles. Others could be found as ornamental elements in thea…

Gnathia ware

(441 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Modern archaeological technical term, derived from the place name (ancient  Gnathia) in eastern Apulia, where the first vases of this type were found in the mid-19th cent. Unlike red-figured vases, in Gnathia ware (GN) the decoration was applied in various opaque colours on the fired vessel body. In addition, details on persons and objects depicted could be indicated or entirely represented by grooving. The production of GN began about 370/360 BC in Apulia, probably triggered by t…

Subsellium

(228 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (βάθρον/ báthron). Long, narrow four-legged bench, lower than a sella, Varro Ling. 5,128 (Seat); usually without a back, occasionally with a rest (Suet. Iul. 84,3; Suet. Claud. 41; Suet. Nero 26,2); made from wood, marble and bronze. Subsellia could be found in every Roman household, and were also used as seats for customers to wait on in shops and workshops; at auctions (Suet. Claud. 39) or public lectures and recitals those present sat on subsellia (Suet. Claud. 41; Juv. 7,45; 7,86). Pupils also sat on a subsellium (Diog. Laert. 2,130; 7,22). Since everybody but the quaes…

Mazonomon

(78 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (μαζονόμον/ mazonómon, μαζονόμιον/ mazonómion, Latin mazonomus), from μάζα/ máza (‘barley bread’) and νέμω/ némō (‘to issue’). Originally, a wooden plate, to pass barley bread (cf. Ath. 5,202c); a carrying bowl made of bronze and gold is also mentioned (Ath. 4,149a; 5,197f). Later a serving plate for poultry (Hor. Sat. 2,8,86; Varro, Rust. 3,4,3), which the scholiasts equated with the Roman lanx (Porph. Hor. Sat. 2,8,86). The mazonomon has not been identified in art with certainty. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)

Table

(447 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (Latin mensa, also cartibum, cartibulum; Greek τράπεζα/ trápeza, τρίπους/ trípous or τετράπους/ tetrápous). Three forms of table are known from Greek and Roman Antiquity: rectangular with three or four legs, round with a central support or three legs, and oblong with one supports at each end; the last variant was primarily employed in gardens and was of marble, with the outer sides of the supports often decorated with reliefs. The other forms of table were usually made of wood, but the feet c…

Viergöttersteine

(225 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] are parts of Jupiter-Giants-columns (Monumental columns III.), found immediately on top of the columns' substructures (followed upwards by a medial plinth with the 'gods of the week' - e.g. Venus for Friday, Saturn for Saturday, a column shaft, decorated with scales or garlands, with a base and a capital with a Iuppiter riding down a Giant). The figures of gods on Viergöttersteine are usually placed in recessed fields: they are usually Iuno (front), Minerva (left), Mercurius (right) and Hercules (back); other gods can be depicted, however, …

Spoons

(284 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Spoons were initially used as stirring or wooden spoons (Greek τορύνη/ torýnē, Aristoph. Equ. 984, cf. Anth. Pal. 6,305; 306, Latin trua or trulla) for preparing food. For scooping liquid foods or wine, a κύαθος/ kýathos was used. Although spoons were known at an early stage, they were little used for eating since people mainly used hollowed-out pieces of bread (μυστίλη/ mystílē, μύστρον/ mýstron) to eat pulse soups, broth or soups etc. (Aristoph. Equ. 1168-1174). The Romans distinguished a spoon with oval bowls ( ligula) for soup, flour soup, pulse etc. from a spoon w…

Hearth

(676 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ἐσχάρα/ eschára, ἑστία/ hestía, Lat. focus, ara, lar, cf. also  Altar). Greeks and Romans honour the hearth and hearth fire especially ( Hestia,  Lares,  Penates,  Vesta,  Fire), since these are the places of worship and the seats of the household gods. It was also the place in the house where the family would meet for meals, as well as a source of light and warmth; thus hearth came to be synonymous with house. During the wedding ( Wedding customs) the bride is led into the bridegroom's house and around the hearth, and the katachýsmata are poured over her, cf. the amphidrómia…

Fer(i)culum

(132 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Occasionally feretrum (e.g., Ov. Met. 3,508; 14,747), the name for various types of devices employed for carrying goods. In particular, it refers to the racks on which objects were presented during processions (triumphs, funerals etc.), e.g., booty, prisoners, images of deities etc. (Suet. Caes. 76). The fericulum was also used to transport the deceased and objects to be interred or cremated (Stat. Theb. 6,126). Fericulum was also the name for the trencher ( Household equipment), the flat bowl in which foods were served during meals (e.g., Pet…

Harpaston

(216 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ἁρπαστόν/ harpastón; harpastón; harpastum). Name for a small, firm ball, then also for a catch ball game using such a ball (Poll. 9,105; Ath. 1,14f.), similar to the   phainínda (cf. Clem. Al. 3,10,50 [and schol.]). The harpaston was a very physical combat game; details of the game are not known. One party attacks the player of the other side, who is in possession of the ball, and attempts to wrest the ball from him (ἁρπάζειν; harpázein, ‘[hastily] grasp’, ‘snatch’, ‘rob’). This player strives to pass the ball to his team mates who in turn are prevented …

Simpuvium

(87 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] ( simpulum, simpuium). Short-handled ladle of Roman priests and Vestal Virgins, usually of clay (Plin. HN 35,158); it was used to pour the wine needed for a  sacrifice (with ill.) on the sacrificial bowl. There are several representions of simpuvia on coins and in reliefs. In everyday life the simpuvium was replaced by the long-handled Greek kýathos (Varro Ling. 5,124). Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography E. Zwierlein-Diehl, Simpuvium Numae, in: H. A. Cahn (ed.), Tainia. Festschrift R. Hampe 1980, 405-422 (with notes 58 and 69 on the form simpuium).
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